Common Mullein


velvet dock, big taper, candle-wick, flannel-leaf, woolly mullein, lamb's ear

Verbascum thapsus

Large oblong densely-hairy leaves growing from a rosette in the first year. Leaves have alternate arrangement in second year. Mullein is commonly found in headlands and boundary areas. Very characteristic flower stalk in second year; can reach six (6) feet tall with yellow flowers on the upper two-thirds of the terminal spike.

  • Crops Affected: turf


    Consistent, routing mowing excludes mullein from most turfgrass sites. However, it may readily occur in adjacent boundary areas (e.g. secondary rough). As a biennial, it is more common to see mullein in the first five years after disturbance. Frequency will diminish over time in stable sites (as meadow canopy density increases).

    Similar Species

    The thick densely-hair leaves of common mullein are not easily mistaken for other plants.